CLCV 1003 Lecture Notes - Lecture 12: Hypocaust, Thermae, Fluorine

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Roman Health and Hygiene
Ancient Medicine
-our knowledge is mostly limited to texts
-Cato, Galen, Soranus, Celsus
-dissection begins in 3rd century BCE
-people approach medicine as magic (amulets, prayer, votives)
-no germ theory (starts in the 16th century)
-miasma > airborne illness (evil spirits/illness spreading through the air)
Galen (2nd century CE)
-Greek/Ionian guy writing under the Roman Empire
-court physician of Marcus Aurleius
-surgeon, animal dissection
-Dietetic/Pharmacy: On the power of foods
Evidence
-glass magnifying lenses from Egypt in the British Museum (2nd century CE)
-metal medical tools from the ancient world
-vaginal and rectal speculum
Female Medical Practitioners
-typically specialists for female concerns > pregnancy ad pregnancy health, childbirth
-midwifery
Roman Dental Health
-plaster casts filling in voids at Pompeii
-CT scans of plaster casts
-may be extra fluorine in the water/soil to help teeth (volcanic area)
-pull teeth with cavities, gold fillings
Bathing in the Roman World
-Roman bath > Bath, England
-natural thermal springs
-“Stabian” Baths, Pompeii (2nd century BCE)
-wet areas for bathing, dry areas for mingling
-dressing room, exercise space
-strigil > tool for scraping dead skin and dirt off your body
-hypocaust system > elevated floor, heating in walls and under floor
tubulus > teracotta flue tile, cube brick
terracotta tegula mammata > breasted tile, brick with nipple
-Imperial Baths built by Caracalla (Rome, 211 CE)
-Imperial Baths built by Diocletian (Rome, 285 CE)
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